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August 10, 2005




Short film based on “The Agnes Story”
moves onto the finals in Cloud 9 Film Festival


For the entire month of July, indie-filmmaker Rik Swartzwelder’s 35mm short, The Least of These, screened in-flight on Frontier Airlines as part of its Cloud 9 Short Film Festival. Based on a true story by sociologist and educator Dr. Anthony Campolo, Swartzwelder’s cinematic take on scrambled eggs, prostitution, and redemption competed against four other short films for a shot at the finals and $5,000.

Simultaneous to their screenings in the friendly skies, The Least of These and the other shorts were available for free viewing online at www.gowildblueyonder.com. There, viewers could vote for their favorite. When all the votes were tallied at the end of the month, Swartzwelder’s film of Campolo’s beloved story emerged as the clear winner.

Swartzwelder is capping off a remarkable festival run with his moody and modestly-budgeted film about an isolated diner owner, his late-night regulars, and a stranger who shakes them out of their dull routine. With over 65 “official selections” and 31 awards to its credit, The Least of These became a surprise juggernaut on the film festival circuit. The film is now available on DVD as well, with nearly 90 minutes of total content including an interview with Campolo himself detailing the real-life events that inspired The Least of These.

Swartzwelder is a writer-director-producer whose films have screened at over 125 film festivals and garnered over 45 major awards, including a Crystal Heart for his 35mm short, The Least of These, and the Student Emmy for his graduate thesis film, Paul McCall. He earned his M.F.A. in Motion Picture Production from The Florida State University and is currently in Los Angeles developing several projects.

For more information on Rik Swartzwelder, The Least of These, or Old Fashioned Pictures please visit www.oldfashionedpictures.com. For more information on the Cloud 9 Short Film Festival, please visit www.gowildblueyonder.com.